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Why the Democrats Just Lost the House and Senate

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of

Remember me?  I'm the guy who, in the middle of the Khan imbroglio in August '16, predicted that Trump would win the presidency.  And I did so again after the release of the Billy Bush tapes in October.

Well, I'm here to make another prediction:  In the last four days, the Democrats just forfeited their shot at winning the House or the Senate in 2018.

In fact, Democrats have made such a grave political miscalculation that only quick action by Republicans can save them from defeat.

The story begins in 1994, when President Bill Clinton gleefully signed a ban on semi-automatic firearms.  I was running for Congress in that year.  And I can tell you that the reaction of the Second Amendment community was so intense that, on this issue alone, Democrats lost 52 seats in the House, and forfeited their firm control of that body for the first time in a generation. Republicans already had control of the Senate, which they continued to hold.

In 1994, semi-automatic rifles were far less common than they are now.  New York and California have generously demonstrated to the rest of America that it is not paranoia to assume that teams of police will come to your home to confiscate your newly-outlawed firearms.

Most Americans understand that this escalating incidence of media-induced mass shootings is characterized by one motive: The desire of the shooters -- particularly the estranged young men -- to seize their 15 minutes of fame, which the liberal media is more than willing to give them.  The Newtown shooter (I will not dignify him by using his name) had an actual wall of press clippings displaying the media attention given to previous shooters.

Faced with pleas to refrain from plastering the names and faces of killers on their 24-hour-a-day wall-to-wall coverage, many conservative radio stations have complied.  But liberal national outlets have pointedly refused -- citing journalistic standards.

The charitable explanation is that outlets view their First Amendment obligations as trumping their moral obligation to minimize carnage through voluntary action.  The uncharitable explanation is that these dead children are "collateral damage" in their "higher calling" of enacting gun control.

But, faced with the fact that this strategy has failed, anti-gun advocates are now faced with the problem that none of their previous "panaceas" could have prevented Parkland. Universal background checks and enhanced NICS submissions -- posited after Newtown and Sutherland Springs, respectively -- would almost certainly not have prevented the Parkland killer (Again, I will not use his name) from legally obtaining a gun.  A bump stock ban -- so popular after Las Vegas -- is almost certainly irrelevant to any future tragedy.

So what does the Left do?  They forgot the lesson of 1994 -- learned so painfully -- and informed gun owners they intend to outlaw and seize their guns.  Bret Stephens, writing Saturday for the New York Times, went so far as to call for the repeal of the Second Amendment.  Stephens offered this suggestion in the guise of a moderate who was sympathetic to private gun ownership (by some).

Well, if the Second Amendment community was "fat and happy" on Tuesday, they aren't complaisant any more.  All night after the shooting, Americans logged in to Gun Owners of America to give us money -- money we will use to, once again, make sure that not one word of gun control is signed into law.

They understand that, while Joe Donnelly, Joe Manchin, Heidi Heitkamp, Jon Tester, Claire McCaskill, Angus King, Sharrod Broun, Tammi Baldwin, Bill Nelson, and Bob Casey have given lip-service to the Second Amendment, they would elect a Schumer/Pelosi leadership team that would make a ban on guns in 20,000,000 American households their key objective.

Given this reality, there is only one thing that could stand in the way of the Democrats' demise:  Republicans.

The Senate GOP is reportedly holding secret meetings about how it could become "the party that finally delivers gun control, after Obama's eight-year failure to do so."  GOP Whip John Cornyn's "Fix NICS" bill would shovel millions of new Americans into the FBI's "gun ban list."

Make no mistake about it:  "Bonnie-and-Clyde" are already on that list.  The new names would consist of more veterans with PTSD, more vacation-traffic-ticket scofflaws, more idiosyncratic people whose names are turned in pursuant to California's ex parte "star chamber" gun ban process.

Absent a Republican rescue, Democrats will, ironically, suffer from the problem with having a virtual monopoly on all national media (including outlets of gun-hating Rupert Murdoch). And that is that your echo chamber ultimately dulls your grasp on reality.

I do agree with Democrats on one thing:  Their lionization of killers will continue the succession of one horrific copycat shooting after another.

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